Bank of Canada Survey: Canadians’ Bitcoin Ownership Rising Upwards, Notably Among Females & Older People


The central bank of Canada has revealed the findings of its Bitcoin Omnibus Survey that monitors the trends in the awareness, ownership, and use of Bitcoin and other crypto-assets among Canadians.

The main interest of the Bank of Canada in this survey is in monitoring Bitcoin adoption “to understand how its usage by Canadians could affect the financial system.”

No Change in Knowledge

To start with, there has been no change in Bitcoin knowledge from 2017-2018, which is in contrast with the “sizable increase” observed between 2016 and 2017 period.

The Bitcoin knowledge questions that needed to be answered in True or False ranged from, “The total supply of Bitcoin is fixed,” “Bitcoin is backed by a government,” and “All Bitcoin transactions are recorded on a True distributed ledger that is publicly accessible.”

The survey stated that about two-thirds of Canadians had low Bitcoin knowledge, with the scores for the same higher among the Bitcoin adopters as expected. But one-fifth of the adopters also have low knowledge.

Ownership Increased Among Females & Older People

Awareness of the leading cryptocurrency meanwhile, continued to increase in 2018, with 89 percent of Canadians stating they had heard of Bitcoin, compared with 83 percent in 2017 and 62 percent in 2016.

When it comes to BTC ownership, it continued to increase in 2018, from 3% in 2016, this number increased to 4% in 2017 and 5% last year.

However, an increase in ownership hasn’t been for all demographic groups. While male ownership remained constant at around 6.7%, female ownership jumped from 2.1% to 3.7%. Ownership tripled among people aged 55 and older, rising from 0.5% to 1.7%.

The bank also asked the respondents about their Bitcoin holdings. It estimated the medium amount to be $600.

Bitcoin Holdings, 2016-18

The primary reason behind holding Bitcoin is trending towards transactions. Canadians use BTC more frequently for making transactions that are consistent with the “increasing trend in aggregate Bitcoin transactions throughout 2018,” found the survey.

The central bank says it will continue to monitor the “interplay between” the adoption of Bitcoin among Canadians and their cash usage. It further said because it’s the sole issuer of currency in Canada, Bank of Canada is “interested” in understanding the citizen's adoption and usage of privately issued digital currency.

The bank might also study the emergence of the new type of privately issued digital currency and to what extent the Canadians would adopt this technology for payments.

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